Ring Ratings Update – Anthony Joshua remains the No. 1 heavyweight
Unified heavyweight titleholder Anthony Joshua received a spirited challenge from former beltholder Alexander Povetkin, who had his moments during their entertaining fight last Saturday (Sept. 22) in London. However, the British superstar kept his composure during the rough spots, worked a powerful jab, and then spontaneously blasted the Russian veteran out in sensational fashion in Round 7.
“It was a very impressive stoppage, clinical once he had Povetkin hurt. However, the early rounds A.J was very tentative and got tagged more than you’d like. However, it’s not how you start, it’s how you finish,” remarked Ring Ratings Panelist Anson Wainwright, who suggested dropping Povetkin (previously ranked No. 3) one spot in the heavyweight rankings.
“Povetkin was doing well, but starting to fade or let AJ take over, but I would drop him more than one spot,” added Panelist Martin Mulcahey. “Actually, given his age and way he has been rocked by both (David) Price and AJ I would put him down to No. 7 just below (Joseph) Parker who lasted 12 with AJ and went good rounds with (Dillian) Whyte. The kayo was emphatic and not sure Povetkin has much upside anymore.”
Associate Editor Tom Gray wasn’t as harsh in his assessment of Povetkin as Mulcahey (but he was of Parker).
“I’d keep Povetkin above Parker at No. 5,” said Gray. “I have more respect for Povetkin trying to win against Joshua, than for Parker who went into survival mode. And regardless of how good Parker closed against Whyte, he still lost.”
Managing Editor Brian Harty weighed in with some rankings housekeeping questions that came up as he prepped the ratings for the December 2018 issue of magazine.
“Zhanat Zhakiyanov: He ‘retired’ after his loss to Burnett, but then Anson you had some communication with his team back in June or July about him fighting again. Has there been any more word on that? He’s now at 11 months without a fight, nothing scheduled and Boxrec has removed him from active status.
“Francisco Rodriguez Jr.: I know he has come up several times before, but he’s rated at 112 and has weighed in above that eight fights in a row – and even when he weighed 112.5 he was fighting for a belt at jr. bantam. That’s 2½ years without a fight where he’s rated.”
The Panel will address these matters on Sunday, along with the Kosei Tanaka and Hiroto Kyoguchi fights that took place in Japan earlier in the week, and the recent busy weekend that included Callum Smith’s WBSS final victory and Ring super middleweight title-winning stoppage of George Groves. The Panel will also discuss awarding the first women’s divisional Ring magazine title belt to the winner of the Nov. 17 middleweight unification (WBA, WBC, IBF and WBO) bout between Claressa Shields and Christina Hammer.
Heavyweight – No. 1-rated Joshua holds on to the top spot in the sport’s glamor division. Povetkin drops from No. 3 to No. 5.
Lightweight – Luke Campbell moves up one spot, from No. 8 to No. 7, following his one-sided revenge rematch decision over No. 9-rated Yvan Mendy, who drops from the rankings. Teenage phenom Devin Haney (20-0, 13 KOs), who outpointed respected veteran Juan Carlos Burgos last night (Sept. 28), enters the 135-pound ratings at No. 10.